Thursday, April 30, 2009

all quiet on the blogging front

And with the end of the Biggest Loser I found myself lacking impetus to blog. What's going on? Was I so immersed in the transformational journeying and history making weight loss TV that now I find myself cast adrift, wondering whether to watch RSPCA animal rescue or NCIS. I have lost my TV centre, my reason for pressing ON on the remote, for muting the ads, for my all round snarky commentary about various contestants, for imitating the Commando's monotone and inappropriate pauses, for wondering whether Shannan's tattoo was indeed real or painted on every evening. In short, I am bereft.

I watched Teachers on Tuesday night. It's sort of like Grange Hill for grown ups. Don't get me wrong, I watched a lot of Grange Hill as a youngster, marvelling at the "indoorsy" nature of English schools, and wondering just why soccer was called football. Teachers is all very enjoyable but if you miss it you don't care. I just don't know where to find that kind of show that will fill the Biggest Loser shaped void in my TV watching week.

And with the Bundaberg Music Eisteddfod starting on Monday there will be very little TV next week. Instead, I will be opening and closing doors, gaping in awe at stage parents (aaaggh), directing and ushering choirs and bands on and off the stage, setting many chairs and music stands, gossiping over who won and who should have won, encouraging nervous students backstage, accompanying a few others, and generally running about.

Meanwhile, this evening at 5pm it's the annual Bundaberg campus Graduation. I shall don the ugliest Phd academic gown in the history of academic gowns. (Picture these colours: blue, gold, pink, dignified!) I shall play Trumpet Voluntary (on the piano) as the academics process in. I shall play the national anthem as everyone stands and attempts to sing, usually somewhat unenthusiastically. I shall then accompany the award winning Bundaberg Youth Choir as they perform two inspiring, tearjerking pieces - Nella Fantasia and Time to Say Goodbye. I shall then sit down clap loudly as 13 of our past STEPS students walk across the stage to graduate. I'll applaud the other graduates as well, just not as loudly! And lastly, I shall hand the ugly gown back to the hire people and hope and pray that by next year they finally change it to something more tasteful.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

It was all about BOB

I'm sure you're all as devastated as I am with the Biggest Loser now FINISHED until next year. How to sum up in one tiny blog post the MAGNITUDE of the SERIES and it's contribution to BIGGEST LOSER HISTORY. One word really...BOB. It was all about Bob and was always going to be, despite some people thinking they were using the show to launch their opera singing career (yes I am looking at you Amanda. You are not the biggest loser. Neither are you the next Susan Boyle or whoever that Scottish lady with the scary eyebrows is). However, I am sure some nitwit will believe you can sing in spite of that AWFUL TOP NOTE you screeched out in Nessun Dorma last night. I had to look away from the TV. Good job did lose a fair amount of weight.

But back to the show. Ajay had gone crazy with the fake tan and the glitter body spray. Still she had a relatively tasteful pretty dress on which would have warmed my Grandma's heart. (Because there's nothing like a pretty dress you know!). She also seemed to have remembered how to smile with the SERIOUS BIGGEST LOSER FACE nowhere to be seen. Instead, lots of jolliness..which at times was a little bit disconcerting.

I only got to tune in at 9:15 due to choir committments, but don't think I missed too much...just the usual endless recapping etc - this time of the entire series rather than just the previous episode. So I imagine this took some time. I did make it in time for the all important WEIGHING IN of the ELIMINATED CONTESTANTS. They started with the ones who were still a little bit BIG. As you do. So we all knew that leaving Sean until last meant that he had WON the 30000 dollars. HURRAH FOR YOU SEAN. You seem like a GOOD GUY who could use 30000 dollars.

And then down to business. The FINAL FOUR: SHARIF, BOB, TIFFANY, SAMMY. I spent a lot of time hoping Sammy would not win, despite father Cameron's best efforts to try and manipulate the GAME so she would. Well, haha on you Cameron. Still, good job Sammy you did lose a LOT of weight. And yes, Andrew, Tiffany did look like a Barbie doll. Still, quite the TRANSFORMATION. And then Sharif...a big tall man, who is now looking FANTASTIC. I was glad he didn't win because couldn't have stood the AGONY of him not winning the MONEY. And finally BOB who noone was going to beat anyway. Bob lost over 80 kilos which was over half his original bodyweight. Bob seems like a lovely man and I'm GLAD he won. Cue streamers, music, cheering, clapping and all round happiness. Biggest Loser history made. THE END.

What I am going to watch now? The chef show is not inspiring me to turn it on.

What do you mean I'm going to have to read a book? That's crazy talking.

Monday, April 27, 2009

They just don't write catchy sitcom theme tunes like they used to in the 80s

Funny actually. I started proof reading my book manuscript and in the preface which was newly written I had noted that one of the shows I grew up watching was the Golden Girls. And then I hear the news that Bea Arthur has passed away. What the attraction of a sitcom about four female retirees was for a young girl growing up in Queensland I'm not sure but I watched it a lot. I remembered all the words to this theme song. They just don't write catchy sitcom songs like they used to in the 80s.

I mistakenly began watching Rove

In my humble Biggest Loser watching opinion Cameron should have given the nothing bracelet to Sammy NOT Sharif. Sure he "fell on his sword" (and I quote directly) by "taking his foot off the pedal" (again quoting directly) by falling BELOW THE YELLOW LINE so his daughter could make it to the final And then Sharif PLAYED THE GAME WITH INTEGRITY (yet another direct quote) during the fat cutting elimination with Ajay by voting Cameron out as was his wish. So if Cameron was ALSO PLAYING THE GAME WITH INTEGRITY he would have rewarded Sharif for doing his bidding by keeping the bracelet IN THE FAMILY and giving Sharif the opportunity to be THIS YEAR'S BIGGEST LOSER.

I'm just saying.....if you understand none of the paragraph above you've probably come a little late to TBL given that it finishes TONIGHT. I for one will be racing HOME FROM CHOIR in time to SEE WHO WINS. It's going to be a VERY EXCITING MOMENT IN BIGGEST LOSER HISTORY. (Still yet to find that book. Wait...perhaps I have been writing aforementioned history here in my endless pernicky BL posts).

Then I watched the last hour of the dancin' program. I'm not into dancing particularly. Still it looked like the finalists could dance. I could have done with more from the excerpt from Chicago. That was fun. Can anyone tell me what the function of these judges was on this program? Did they ever actually judge anything or did they just sit there to comment? Can they dance? Why did the 12 year old boy on the right always wear a hat? So many questions.

And then I mistakenly began watching Rove, quickly realised the error of my ways and went to bed.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

there are no bodies being dissected before your very eyes

Right, by accident I discovered a Billy Connolly travel show at 6:30 on Channel 7. I will watch Billy Connolly do just about anything. Last night he travelled up the east coast of North America as far as the top of Newfoundland. It looked cold and wet. His jubilant approach to anything and everything is delightful. As is his banjo playing.

Then New Tricks - sadly still in repeats but this was a good one with cats at the centre of the mystery. Subplots involved Brian's dog and Jack signing his new will. It's all a lot of fun and just the type of crime show I can be bothered with. Because there are no bodies being dissected before your very eyes.

Then I listened to the Iron Chef while I faffed about on Facebook. So sorry Iron Chef fans I can't tell you what the theme ingredient was or, indeed, who won.

But Rockwiz was a treat, even if also in repeat. Martha Wainwright and a man who had played with Frank Zappa were the special guests. Luverly.

That's all I can manage. All my TV brain power has been channelled into my paper which incidentally seems to have improved this morning.

Wizard themed prizes

Sunday...ain't that supposed to be a day of rest?

Here in the Davis household that isn't the case today.

I shall be continuing to write my paper. I got a good 1000 words completed yesterday followed by a very very bad 2000 words. I have a friend who also completed a PhD (in sociology). She had the most methodical and global brain in the world (well..that might be a slight exaggeration). She could sit down to write a paper, write up a plan and then actually stick to it. I can't write like that. I start somewhere with a particular end in mind and I can make as many plans as I like but I will never stick with one of them. I shape, and reshape, write and rewrite and by the end of the whole process it looks nothing like I expected. In short, it was mildly ridiculous to think I could write the whole thing in a weekend and I will continue working on it right through this week. Perhaps I will even need to request permission to (shock, horror, gasping!) work at home.

For anyone who is reading this who works at a normal university, let's not even go there with the "asking permission to work at home".

I also need to do washing, a minor amount of cleaning and tidying, buy food (given that shops were shut yesterday) and buy wizard themed prizes for my Monday student competition in the morning.

Out of all these things, I think the last will be the most enjoyable.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

television in the 71st century

I am working an article today and it connects to something I have previously had published. So going back to that article for the first time to quote myself (as you do!) I noticed that the whole way through all the "2s" have been printed as "7s".

So in the introductory paragraph there is a hilarious sentence which reads: "The 71st century sees television at a crucial point in its development". And it continues that way all through the paper.

I am sure the 71st century will see television at a crucial point in its development, but I am puzzled as to what it may be.


Watch, Listen and Singalong: Part 21: Simplicity on Saturday

A peaceful, simple start to Saturday.

How nice to see Michael Stipe actually smile at the finish.

I already have enough cooking shows in my life

Dear Channel 10/ producers of The Biggest Loser/ producers of Masterchef/ Too clever for their own pants promotion people,

I know that television is all about the advertising, the branding, and the all round marketing and promotion. But please...the BLATANT INSERTION of a Masterchef style challenge for last night's contestants under the guise of "seeing if they would be able to maintain their good nutrition and new-found cooking skills outside Camp Biggest Loser" was a WASTE of 20 minutes. That was 20 minutes we could have been spending with BOB. By the way, the last we saw of Bob the Commando had left him at the SUMMIT of a mountain on Fitzroy Island. Is he still there? What is going on?

Also, I only need one program per year about people going on a "JOURNEY OF TRANSFORMATION" and The Biggest Loser has been it. No matter what you throw at me in the way of SNEAK PEEKS, ads, operatic Verdi choruses and House of Flying Daggers acrobatics with plates of food in hand, I am not planning to watch Masterchef. Perhaps it will be the HIT OF THE CENTURY. I'm doubtful, but if so, too bad for me. Be assured neither will I be watching any more Australian Idols or So you think you dances. I already have enough cooking shows in my life (Iron Chef, Ready Steady Cook, The Cook and the Chef, Fast Ed on BHAG, Hewey, Jamie, etc). I may tune in if there is another AMAZING RACE..because it is indeed AMAZING and I like the BICKERING and the STUPIDITY, whilst they are on an actual journey AROUND THE WORLD, as well as a JOURNEY OF SELF DISCOVERY. I may also watch Dancing with the Stars but only if Daryl Somers returns.

However, thank you for bringing the nice man with the Irish accent to show us how the contestants biological age had DRAMATICALLY REDUCED. THAT was interesting. It was a pity it was only the LAST 3 MINUTES of the SHOW.

Yours in television viewing

PS. I also watched Elvis Costello interview and sing with Smokey Robinson on ABC2 at 8:30 That was most enjoyable television. Watch, learn, take notes etc.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fairly fantastic Friday afternoon

"I'll shout you this one Wendy"

You know the feeling, it's Friday afternoon. Lunchtime, you go home and eat a revolting sandwich with last night's cold sausages and tomato sauce and think, "there's got to be more to life than this". So you think, perhaps I can avoid returning to work for just a little bit longer by going and filling my car with petrol. I know, I won't go to the petrol station closest to the Uni, I'll drive into town to one of the few service stations in Bundaberg (and perhaps the universe) that still offers driveway service. You chat to the nice lady, you hand over your credit card and pay an exorbitant amount for filling your car. Then you think, I'm really very close now to the centre of town, I have five dollars, maybe I'll do a circuit and pick up a coffee to take back to work to survive the afternoon. So you drive through the crazy Bundaberg traffic where people still find roundabouts a novelty, to your favourite ever coffee shop and ask for a takeaway decaf skinny flat white (as you do...or not depending on your coffee preferences).And because you're such a good customer, or perhaps because you're looking a little pathetic (let's choose the first option shall we?) as you're reaching into your purse for your five dollar note, your favourite barista says "I'll shout you this one Wendy".

Suddenly angels are singing a heavenly chorus and Friday afternoon seems fairly fantastic.

it's not "must see TV for me"

Mad Men...ummm. Still in undecided mode about this one. I'm just finding out all too cliched, predictable, and dare I say it, a little bit dull. But is that the point? If so, then I don't think it's very clever. If not, well then it's just not very good. So far though, it's not "must see TV for me". Will it slowly grow on me? If so, it's hiding it's potential very cleverly.

To more important business however, Stewart was SENT HOME by Sammy, after Tiffany TOOK THE MOTHER OF ALL WALKS (and yes that's a direct quote), chose to take Sammy's double bracelet, and then GIVE SAMMY the briefcase, in which was a NOTE telling SAMMY she had an HOUR to send another CONTESTANT HOME. Everyone thought it would be SHARIF, but SAMMY made her decision with her HEART rather than her HEAD. SO Sharif is still IN THE GAME. And then there were FOUR, plus the TWO on the LOSER ISLAND who had to climb to the summit of a mountain, where the COMMANDO left them. POOR BOB nearly died on the way up, but he MADE IT. YAY BOB. We haven't seen them WEIGHED forever. WILL THAT BE TONIGHT please??

Oh...I'm writing about The Biggest Loser by the way.

Lighten your Friday with old JS Bach

Bach double violin concerto third movement. I can never decide which is my favourite movement of this piece. They're all wonderful, just depending on your mood I suppose. The lightness and joy of this performance is delightful.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

surely reality couldn't be rigged?

SAD for me I only caught the last 10 minutes of The BIGGEST LOSER last night. Really, though it was all I needed to see as TIFFANY won the Escalator CHALLENGE and won the POWER OF THE WALK. This apparently, is a walk that will CHANGE THE GAME FOREVER. Gee...haven't heard that before. Looks like something to do with a briefcase. COULD IT HAVE MONEY IN IT. Tune in tonight to find out! The bigger QUESTION is why did Stewart concede the CHALLENGE when he didn't even seem to be PUFFING. Hmmmmm.....surely reality couldn't be rigged in any way shape or form. Please do not disillusion me BIGGEST LOSER.

Spicks and Specks a little bit dull in comparison to the previous week, except for that Spooky Male Voice Choir. They were very enjoyable! I was a little bit distracted while viewing however, making my "Things to do" list for the Eisteddfod. It is a big list divided into three columns: this week, next week, next weekend. Pleasingly, I have already been able to cross some things off it this morning. Once I have a list, I'm set! Because, who doesn't love ticking things off a list?

Then the unmentionable and unwatchable ABC program about advertising for which I turned off the TV.

And then Lawrence Leung. I didn't enjoy this one as much as previous weeks either. What is going on? Am I in a bad mood? There was too much of the John Safrans about his setups for me. Overdone, overcooked, over the top, over it. Regain your natural, naive innocence that I so liked in the first couple of episodes dear Lawrence...please. Final episode next week apparently. It seems I am fickle in my fandom for Lawrence's comedy. Disappointing.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The pointy end of the game

Apparently we are now at the POINTY END of the GAME. Suddenly last night, things got moving because it seems (according to my mother) that FINALE is next Monday night. AAAGGGH. That's choir night. I am now in a terrible quandary. Would I really skip my duties at choir to watch THe Biggest Loser? I have invested a lot of time and energy into this program so I feel it is my right to stay home and watch it. I need a plan, that involves multiple friends who have moved into the 21st century and have dvd recorders.

So it was Train the Trainers, where the contestants took their REVENGE on the trainers for the various WORLDS OF PAIN they had been subject to. And it seemed they really did. Shannan was working up a real SWEAT and Michelle appeared to nearly throw up by the end. Of course, the cynical amongst us would believe this is SET UP FOR THE CAMERAS. I choose to believe otherwise. Perhaps I am a Biggest Loser SAP. However the trainers then got their own back with PAYBACK training. There was lots of talk of journeys, transformations, athleticism, winning etc. Then they sat the remaining contestants down and MADE THEM WATCH their audition videos. CUE CRYING. One thing I won't miss is the crying. Please if there is another series of BL can there be less crying? It's getting old. I usually watch it with my parents(because we are addicted as a family which is lovely really isn't it?) and we are now experts at predicting crying and when the ad break is coming up. Such is the repetition of the format. That's half the fun.

Question: How long is it since we saw Bob and Nathan weighed? I believe over a week. I think we caught a brief glimpse of them last night, but I can't remember what they were doing. Such is the mush of my brain this morning. More Bob tonight PLEASE.

I wrote a letter to my cat

Dear Harrison
Please note I am using the formal, full version of you name as this is a serious letter. I am more than happy for you to climb up the security screens in search of moths, bugs, geckoes and other assorted insects. I do not mind that you have claimed every comfortable chair in the house as your own and covered it with cat hair as you rotate your daily sleeping regime of approximately 10 hours. That's what the lint roller is for. I like the funny squawking noise you make as you sit as a tiger waiting for its prey watching the peewees in the back garden. That's cute. It's also nice that you meet me at the front door when I get home and I can hear you meowing as I drive in. I'm also okay with you sleeping on my bed, as long I am not in it and it has been made. That's most days. I'm not thrilled with you sitting on the kitchen table, but we seem to have come to a truce there at the moment. I really don't like that everytime I get a bunch of fresh flowers you sniff them out and then never leave them alone until you have either started to eat them or knocked them on to the floor. No more bunches of flowers for me. I can make that sacrifice as a responsible pet owner. However, (and here is the vital point of this letter) I do not like it when you catch a lizard, eat half of it, leave the entrails (blood included) for me to clean up and then a little while later, be sick on the floor. If you could stop doing that, it would be much appreciated.
Lots of Love
your owner/servant

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Wendy's Monday evening

Ok. this is what happens when you miss the first minute of TBL. For the first time in BIGGEST LOSER HISTORY Ajay must have QUICKLY explained something - i.e. why Stewart and Sharif did not get to vote in the ELIMINATION. Ploise explain anyone who can?

Oh well, it didn't really matter. Stupidly, I believe, Cam and Tiffany voted Julie out. Not sure why because I think it is Sammy who is the BIGGEST THREAT. Well I know why Cam did - because Sammy is HIS DAUGHTER. But then I may be WRONG. There were buckets of tears from everyone. Not just tears running down face but actual full on choked up, hiccupy crying, where your lip wobbles and makes funny shapes and you can't speak. Well from everyone except Sharif and Stewart who stayed very QUIET. Bye Julie - we all love you and your mummy persona. You seem like a NICE person. Go home lose lots of weight and we will see you at FINALE, which apparently is NEXT WEEK. Excitement!

Then choir started up again after a week's break following the Eisteddfod. We pored over our adjudication sheets for about half an hour and then got stuck into music for the next concert. We have a grant to do a Q150 themed concert in June. So we are singing a variety of things - a couple of folk songs arranged by Brisbane composer Ian McKinley, my favourite of which is Moreton Bay, some Torres Strait Island songs arranged by Stephen Leek, some 1930s ditties - Hustling Hinkler and a song actually written aeons ago about Bundaberg. We also have a pianola roll style thing that is a song about Queensland. Apparently, when Queensland turned 100 all children in schools were taught to sing "Life is great in the Sunshine State". Here in Bundaberg, my mother remembers everyone lining up in rows at the showgrounds while Princess Alexandra (wearing a yellow dress apparently) drove by as they all sang the song. That must have been quite a scene - as well as quite a cacophony. Back to the music, we also have a piece by Graeme Morton (also in Brisbane) - set to the words of Tennyson's Crossing the Bar and a composer from Gayndah is writing a new piece for us based on some words of Vance Palmer, who I learned was born in Bundaberg. Who knew?

Monday, April 20, 2009

freaking amazing and ridiculous 11 point something kilos

WELL....what a BIG night it was on the BIGGEST LOSER. It was all yellow LINES and ELIMINATIONS everywhere you turned.

Long story short, in the SUPER CHALLENGE Sean and Stewart made it out to the yacht first. Everyone else had to GO HOME straight away. Sean is everybody's favourite. Nobody seems to like Stewart, because he has been upfront about his desire to WIN THE 400000 dollars. So everyone HATES HIM in a BIG WAY. Poor Stewart.

Back to Camp Biggest Loser, and everyone was happy hugging Sean, and pseudo hugging Stewart. They had their WHITE SHIRTS on and we went pretty much straight to the WILD CARD WHITE SHIRT WEIGH IN. It was very exciting. Because Sean is so close to his goal weight SADLY we knew he wasn't going to make it ABOVE the YELLOW LINE. And as AJAY kindly explained in her simpleton style, the two people to FALL BELOW the yellow line would be going STRAIGHT home, no passing GO, no collecting 200 dollars. Jodi/Jeda and Sean went home. Stewart had lost 8 kilos or something but SHARIF had lost a FREAKING AMAZING AND RIDICULOUS 11 point something kilos. IN A WEEK. Well done Sharif. You are indeed a BIG LOSER.

Then they had to weigh in against the BLACK TEAM. Drama as Cameron's good NUMBERS pushed his OWN DAUGHTER SAMMY below the yellow line. Surprisingly for once, HE DID NOT CRY. Julie is also below the yellow line. What will happen at tonight's ELIMINATION when it's TIME to CUT the FAT? What sort of inappropriate dress will AJAY be wearing? Sometimes she looks nice, sometimes she wears un-ewe-usal outfits. Why does she stand on a little podium during the weigh-in? Is it because she's absurdly short? Or is it because everyone else stands on some softly lit stands?

One thing's for certain. I will five minutes late to choir because I NEED TO KNOW!

Certainly not Shirley either I would imagine

Ok. I've just started printing out the draft of my book manuscript. A little bit scarily it now looks like a book. 246 pages, a proper copyright page, nice font etc. I could be sitting by the printer for some time.

Now I just have to bring myself to read it, one more time...and fix up the Shirley Bassey lyric thing. Who would have thought that Shirley Bassey would be influencing the final text of my soon-to-be-book? Certainly not me.

Certainly not Shirley either I would imagine.

The Joker is Me

Yes I know this is one of those hopeless youtube outings that's a montage of images. But my interest here is the song, which most of us will recognise as the theme song used for Kath and Kim. With my manuscript coming back to check last night I now have a copyright problem if I want to quote the lyrics directly (which I have). And apparently, this kind of copyright is difficult to clear. So I may have to change the way I have incorporated into the text. I don't think it will be good enough to say "I was unaware"...even though I was. Because that makes me look like a joker.

Still it's a pretty fabulous song. Enjoy.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Is super bigger than big? Clarification required.

Let's start with something different today, working in reverse order. Before I went to bed with my headache from Hades, I watched Spectacle with Elvis Costello. I hadn't caught it before because I was persisting with Rebus. With that now replaced by the less attractive Midsomer Murders I took the opportunity of checking out Elvis. He was interviewing The Police. Being very unaware of this period in pop music history I learnt a lot from Elvis's intelligent conversations with each member of the band. Surprisingly, I enjoyed he and Sting's take on the John Dowland lute number. I think having listened to each band member talk about their particular role and musical craftsmanship made the performance at the end so much more interesting to watch. I shall tune in again.

Prior to that however was of course TBL. You know the problem with this show is that an hour is TOO LONG, and half an hour is TOO SHORT. Perhaps 45 minutes would be JUST RIGHT. Down to business, it was the race for the final two WHITE SHIRTS. A SUPER CHALLENGE loomed on an island in Sydney Harbour. Is SUPER bigger than BIG? Ajay wasn't specific. Clarification please? The convict theme was suitably sadistic, as were the rules where the contestants had to return to the start if they got a question wrong. Of course it was left frustratingly UNFINISHED at the end of half an hour because we must TUNE IN on Sunday night to see who wins and makes it into the WILD CARD WEIGH IN. The Yellow line returns in all its sunny glory, DEVASTATING someone's Biggest Loser DREAM. Ooooh, how I can't wait.

(Well, actually I can wait. I'm very patient!)

And where is Bob. We haven't seen him for nights and nights. More Bob, Nathan, Commando action please.

Perhaps I'm not so patient after all...but I did say please.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Faux love and sympathy

Yet another BIG NIGHT on the biggest loser and then I ventured into the world of MadMen.

The contest for the white shirt was the same as last year. Apparently now it has a name - STACKS ON. I don't remember that from last year, but for FANS it was where COSI held the weights on his back the longest and became a LEGEND in BIGGEST LOSER HISTORY. (Still looking for that authoritative tome by the way).

Anyhoo, firstly everyone ganged up on Tania. Because clearly she was the most unfit, but I also like to think it was something to do with their dislike of her excessive green eyeshadow. That was SCARING me. She went out pretty quickly, as did Jodi/Jeda (still not sure who's who there). Then everyone attacked Andrew who managed to get to 100 kilos before he could TAKE NO MORE. Then everyone went for Meghan, Sean and Stewart who STUCK IT OUT for as long as they could but eventually each DROPPED the BAR. No-one seemed to notice that neither Sharif or Teresa had any weights til then which was pretty STUPID, because Sharif is a BIG STRONG LAD now and was looking good. So together they got rid of Ramses. PHEW. Disaster averted. And then Sharif and Teresa slugged it out between each other. Teresa did pretty well, but Sharif managed to hold up 140 kilos on his barbell for just a few seconds longer. He is BACK IN THE GAME with a WHITE SHIRT for the WILD CARD WEIGH IN. Hurrah! (Oh and in other news Amanda went home AGAIN with an INJURY - this time her shoulder. Cue much hugging and faux love and sympathy from the other contestants)

Then I tried the first episode of MadMen on SBS. Hmmmm. As I noted on Twitter I am reserving my judgement until I've seen a few more episodes. The trouble with programs that come so hyped and critically applauded is that my expectations are always so high that the program rarely rises to meet them. I have the same problem with movies. Yes Margaret and David can give something four stars and then I see it and think, "Is that it?". I'm not sure what I was expecting with MadMen but it was something more than this. The sets, costumes, lighting, styling of the era was very beautiful, yet the insights into the world of advertising and gender politics failed to stun me. Surely the open sexism and racism can't be a surprise to any in this enlightened age (and yes I use the term "enlightened" with some ironic reservations) Still maybe it's a grower. We shall see. It was nice to see Holling Vincoeur from Northern Exposure though as the Lucky Strike man. Yes I know that's his character name. But that's how I always think of him.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Suddenly the SBS News became very very fascinating

It was a BIG night on the BIGGEST LOSER with all the eliminated contestants competing for one of the four white TSHIRTS that would get them into the WILDCARD WEIGHIN with the two BIGGEST LOSERS getting back into CAMP Biggest Loser. Complicated. YES. In the time it took Ajay to explain the rules of this temptation I did all the dishes. Time well spent. I'm just observing. Last night the first shirt was up for grabs in a temptation based on a children's party theme. There was a JUMPY Castle. And presents. They had to running race to get their hands on one of the six presents. One had a white shirt in it, another a GO HOME card, and then various other things in the other four, ranging from chocolate crackles to a trek to Vietnam. Jodi/Jeda (not sure on who is who here out of these two) won the white shirt. She was PRETTY HAPPY. Poor green Ben got the GO HOME card. Poor Ben was sad, yet philosophical. Sean, strangely, "chose not to run" (Seinfeld reference there people: "I choose not to run"). Oh and Emazon reappeared with some lame excuse for getting the black final four to do some cage fighting. Was this a little bit tasteless or is that just me? And yes, I realise the ridiculousness of this question when we are talking about The Biggest Loser more generally. All things in context.

And then Spicks and Specks with some half decent guests at last. Steve Coogan and another English comedian whose name I can't remember but he was funny as well. And the singer from Madness. I actually laughed out loud at certain points so that was a good sign. I tried with Lawrence Leung's Rubik's Cube challenge but couldn't stomach (HA!) the sword swallower, especially when he informed us he was going to hang some weights on wire from his eye sockets. Suddenly the SBS News and Weather became very, very fascinating.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


I've reset my twitterfeed from my blog to twitter. Hoping that it's working again. Seems the funny worm yesterday may have interrupted things.


You get the idea

I've just about had it with all the crying

They all came back, one by one. And then Ajay weighed them ONE BY ONE. It was all a little bit BORING. Let's get to the CHALLENGE to see who will be BACK IN THE GAME. Amanda the would be opera singer had lost a LOT of weight as had her husband Stewart who now looks quite THIN. The earliest eliminatees had lost the LEAST but had still managed around 20 KILOS each. I still can't quite believe that Holly and Mel LOVE EACH OTHER as much as they are professing.

And I've just about HAD IT with ALL THE CRYING. Stop asking all those lame LEADING QUESTIONS please Ajay.

Oh, and up on Loser Island, Bob is looking very HAGGARD and Nathan is still looking DISAPPOINTED IN HIS WEIGHT GAIN. The Commando gave him a PEP TALK, which sounded pretty much the same as ALL HIS OTHER TALKS. Gruff monotone plus words of few syllables.

Less tissues and more action tonight please.

Kilburn Silk

Monday saw the breaking of my red V&A mug followed by some distinctly unladylike words. Being a Libran and unable to cope without a matching pair I had to go to our wonderful fine china shop here in town, Avenells ( a store incidentally which has been going for well over 100 years) and buy another one. They didn't have the red one, but this will match my brown one very nicely. The design is called Kilburn Silk by William Kilburn (1745 - 1818).

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Get on board the Bob bandwagon

Now COME ON people. Why oh why oh why did you not vote out Cameron?? I do not understand. He is clearly a BIG THREAT with so much more weight to lose. You do not want him in the BIG FINALE.

If he ends up winning the whole thing I can't be responsible for actions blog-wise. Expect much ranting, raving and all round BIG DISAPPOINTMENT.

I am on the Bob bandwagon. Go Bob.

That is all for today.

(Excepting for GREAT EXCITEMENT as it looks like all eliminated contestants return tonight to try and get back IN THE GAME.)

Then stupidly I started watching a Jennifer Aniston movie. Picture Perfect. It was very very bad, but somehow they had managed to attract some decent actors to the project - Jay Mohr? Olympia Dukakis? Clearly, they were hard up for a gig at the time. Kevin Bacon was the bad boyfriend who had commitment issues. There was no dancing from him which was mildly disappointing. Jen's hair was always perfect which is more than one could say for the movie. Jay was the all round nice guy who Jen realised was the one for her. The end, don't bother.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Your friendly Biggest Loser update

Before I fell into bed particularly early last night, I did of course ensure that I managed to stay awake through the ALL IMPORTANT weigh in.

First though, the contestants had to FINISH the BIG CHALLENGE in New Zealand. Meghan baulked at the BUNGEE JUMPING. No hard feelings Meghan. I would have done the same. I mean really, that can't be good for your insides, never mind the height factor. That meant she and Sammy were last to the BIG CHOICE of low calorie food at the FINISH LINE. Meghan wanted to make sure she took the food with the highest calories because she was READY TO GO HOME. "PICK THE SPAM". She picked the spam and was subsequently ELIMINATED. Before she did though she gave the NOTHING BRACELET to Cam.

There was a LOT OF CRYING. There may have even been a little tear in the loungeroom but of course we don't need to go into that. I was tired and emotional after my long car journey and the weekend of BIG EISTEDDFOD. Of course I would never cry at something as silly as THE BIGGEST LOSER. Never...never, I tell you.

Anyway, (HAHAHA) at the Survivor Island weigh-in crowd favourite Bob still continues to lose weight apace. Boofy boy Nathan who is now speaking like he IS the Commando PUT ON WEIGHT. Oh could this have happened? What a BIG SHOCK. Time for Nathan to go and have a good long hard look at himself in the mirror Roy and HG style I think.

The contestants, who have now been whittled down to five, returned to Australia for their own BIG WEIGH IN. The dreaded yellow line continues to make its yellow FORCE felt in the competition. Sean, darling, you have lost all your weight whereas others like Cam and Sammy still have QUITE THE WEIGHT to lose. This means, dear Sean I think you will be going HOME tonight. Because not only are you UNDER the yellow line with are not in the ALLIANCE. Perhaps you are one of the REBEL FORCES. I have mixed my Star Wars metaphors there but it seems appropriate.

However, wait just a little minute before you switch off the TV to avoid the blare of the dancin' show. The previews imply Cam telling everyone to VOTE FOR HIM. What in heaven's name is going on here? Could the Alliance be breaking up? Could this be the end for Cam? If it is, will he cry? I don't about the first three questions but the answer to the fourth is ALWAYS YES.

Stay tooned tonight for an exciting ELIMINATION episode of TBL when everyone faces AJAY in the elimination room. Bring on the big serving platters and let's cut some FAT.

The sea was angry that day my friends....

Finish this Seinfeld quote. You won't win a prize but you will have the satisfaction of knowing you are a true Seinfeld fan.

In other words, the Sunshine Coast was not so sunny on Easter Sunday.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The great eisteddfod madrigal controversy of 2009

Always fascinating at Eisteddfods (Queensland or otherwise) is how people interpret set pieces. This year in the choral madrigal section the set piece was Amaryllis, fair as lilies, by Horatio Vecchi ( i think that was his name). Apart from the whole ridiculousness of having choirs of up to about 70 voices singing pieces written for perhaps 4-12 voices the question of interpretation is absolutely key. Given that these pieces were written so long ago, any tempo and dynamic markings are usually later editorial observations to be taken with a grain of salt. This means conductors have to work hard to understand the correct style of madrigal singing. The words of the text and the shape of the melody line as well as the chording and key are what give the clue to how to interpret these beautiful songs. Here we had the story of a poor young fellow pining for his true love who seemed to have rejected him, a sighing, falling melody line, longer note values, and F minor (except for the characteristic Tierce di Picardie major chord at the end). So for most musicians in their right mind, lines like "Ah me, I die if such thy will is" would perhaps suggest a slower, flowing, legato and beautifully shaped rise and fall of the phrases. Lots of sighing, dying and a lovely way.

Not so, for either the winning choir or the adjudicator. Instead they went for a brisk tempo, lots of staccato, chopped up words and phrases and in doing so turned it into a jolly little ditty. Odd, strange, and oh so wrong. There was indeed much murmuring when the winner was announced, and the Eisteddfod grapevine had it that one of the conductors of the big Ipswich choirs was going to give the adjudicator a well informed piece of her mind once the competition was finished. How I would have liked to be a fly on the wall then.

Our choir didn't come away with any prizes but we held our heads high and gave a good account of ourselves. Indeed, we were judged by many to be very unlucky not to place in the Sacred section where our performance of Moses Hogan's arrangement of Hear my Prayer left the audience with one of those split second moments where you can hear them holding their breath as you have them in the palm of your hand before they realise it's finished and they need to applaud. Standing on the stage you could feel it. That was special.

The ladies chorus also survived The Bluebird, which the adjudicator noted was an especially difficult choice for a set piece and akin to the choristers baring all in bikinis in the naked challenges it set for them. In other words, she was less than impressed with the choice. I knew there was a reason I didn't like it. However the absolute highlight was the Oriana Concert Choir's modern chorus - a slightly funked up, jazzy version of Bridge over Troubled Water. I know, it sounds lame, but it was so absolutely fantastic I could hardly believe my eyes and ears. That was worth the trip to Kawana alone...almost. As my friend from Maryborough noted, it was world class in standard. She did say our Fields of Gold was very beautiful as well, but the Paul Simon number was in another musical stratosphere.

So all in all, a good weekend, but nice to home.

Friday, April 10, 2009

bandaids for when new shoes give me blisters

Last minute checking:

hairdryer - i hate motel hairdryers
black clothes
other clothes
assorted black shoes
season ticket
brush and comb
tea - green and chamomile
mobile phone
shampoo etc
notebook and pen
pillow - I hate motel pillows
bandaids for when new shoes give me blisters
book to read when things get boring
map of where we're going

All present and correct...ready now.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I'm sitting in an orange beanbag watching a plan come together

"Turbo boost" is still an oft-used phrase in our family. What about that car? And that electronica theme tune?

For A Team delights you'll have to click here as embedding disabled by request.

As is "I love it when a plan comes together"

It's quite blurry as well. Where are Dwight Schulz and Dirk Benedict now I wonder. Have they disappeared once more into the Los Angeles underground?

Thanks Circulating Library for the inspiration to find these.

the gods of engraving big ugly trophies were smiling

I'm packing to go away tomorrow to the Eisteddfod. I'm a bad packer. Well that's not strictly true. I'm good at packing to go away for a month. But for two days I always manage to take twice as many things as I need and return with most of it unworn. Anyway, I have spent the day coordinating various items of black clothing to play in. This involved washing some items that haven't been worn for some time and - joy of joys - the obligatory tissue was washed also, even though I checked the pockets. The lint roller will be making an appearance very soon.

For the uninitiated among you, the word Eisteddfod means going away every year at Easter to face choirs twice the size of your own in fierce competition, which they take very, very seriously. Some of them take longer to file all their singers onto the choir stands than they take to sing. Last year, when we became the little choir that could and beat the pants off them in the Open Chief Choral contest, there was walking out in huffs, grumbling and mumbling far into the night. It also continued through to the next morning. Losing gracefully was clearly not in some people's choral vocabulary. It appears, that for some, it's sheep stations. It's all a learning experience people. Because we're half the size of the choirs from Ipswich and Toowoomba we never expect to win. Highly commended is exciting for us.

Anyway, just when I was feeling very virtuous that I had everything in order, I woke up from my afternoon nap at about 4 and realised I had a perpetual trophy that needed engraving so I could take it with me tomorrow to return. I wasn't hopeful that any trophy shops would still be open the day before Good Friday, but the gods of engraving big ugly trophies were smiling upon me. Fifteen minutes and five dollars later, I was good to go. I've had 12 months to complete this task, so good to wait until the last possible moment to add a frisson of excitement into the day.

N.B. I may have used the word frisson incorrectly. Too bad, I like the sound of it.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

bluegrass banjo Steve

And just because it's been that kind of Wednesday let's finish the afternoon with another favourite banjo playing comedian.


rockin' banjo billy

The word for the day is "banjo".

Rockin'....(I can't believe I just wrote that)

I don't expect you to singalong here by the way.

urping at the cat

It's my sister Jillian's birthday today, so I am using the blog to post a Happy Birthday to her. Happy Birthday Jilly.

Here's some things about Jillian for regular readers of Spiralling Shape.
She's twelve years younger than me, which means my Mum was the same age I am now when she had her. When I was twelve I though my Mum was really, really old. Now I realise she was extremely youthful ;)

When Jillian was born we all had an input into her middle name. Mum was going for Frances. My brother and I thought this was completely awful. After much Davis-style family joking about calling her Jillian Lillian, we all agreed on Kate. But the Lillian also stuck, so often we call her Jillian Lillian or Jilly Lilly. She also like Jilly or Jillo.

She loves TV like I do. Favourite shows are The Simpsons, Neighbours, Seinfeld (no doubt due to her sister's fine influence),Lost and many many others.

She loves chocolate, McDonalds, chips, shapes, Bundaberg Ginger Beer and all manner of sugary, junk foods.

When she was about 2 she had a cute yet annoying habit of plonking herself in the middle of the newspaper if you had it spread out on the floor reading it. She also use to terrorise our cat at the time by lying on the floor when it was under the lounge and pretending to burp at it by saying "urp". We all thought that was cute too and remind her of it frequently.

She's a great sister (even if like me she's a little bit cranky pants sometimes. But hey aren't we all?).

And we have the same love of T-Shirts as evidenced by this photo where we unknowingly ordered the same shirt from Threadless last year.

(This may be the one and only time I post a picture of myself on the blog. The things I will do to wish my little sister a Happy Birthday.)

PS. Jillian you are not getting Guitar Hero for your birthday. However, on the upside, you are not getting a lump of coal either.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

a very pretty skirt

I've just been up to the retirement village where my grandmother lives. She'd fallen over and bruised her foot and arm so my mother and I had to go looking for the nurse on duty. It was dinner time (5pm) so there were elderly people everywhere. I smiled at them all as we wandered through the obstacle course of walkers. A lively old dear sitting in an armchair, with dangly earrings and red hair, told me I had on a very pretty skirt. I laughed and said thank you very much. Then I started to wonder....

Does this mean
1. I have old lady taste in clothes
2. The old lady has younger lady taste in clothes
3. Myself and the old lady meet somewhere in the middle of our ages - say 55 and we both have that age group's taste in clothes.
4. Good taste in clothes is ageless so it doesn't matter.

I'm preferring to think option two or four but am worried slightly that it's one or three.

I stepped in a puddle

Only managed 20 minutes of Loserville last night before I had to RUN out the door to choir. But it was long enough to see ANDREW voted off the Island and put his fire OUT. He is clearly the WEAKEST LINK and the TRIBE has spoken. Loudly! So that means at this very moment he is back in Hervey Bay training his little HEART OUT.

On the choir front, we leave on Friday to go to the Queensland Eisteddfod at Kawana. So to borrow a term from TBL, this was LAST CHANCE CHOIR PRACTICE. Luckily we didn't have to crawl under any cargo nets or carry big ropes. I did however manage to step ankle deep into a puddle on arrival. Luckily I had worn my old shoes because it was raining. I'm hoping they are dry this morning.

We did a bit of a post Sunday concert post mortem (is that too many "posts"?). Fields of Gold is fine and very lovely. So too are the madrigals. I think these are our strength. As our wonderful conductor keeps telling us madrigals are meant to be sung with only 1-2 voices per part. This is where we, as a smaller choir (about 40) have an edge over the uber-choirs from Ipswich and Toowoomba who can have anything from 70-90 singers. To quote Kath and Kim, they're YUGE. (My goodness I've developed a bad writing tic with these BL capitals). Anyway, I think we're doing a great job with our ballett - Sing we and chant it, and the set piece, Amaryllis fair as lillies. The first is suitably buoyant and light (fa la la la la la) and the second mournful and heartsick. The pieces for the Sacred section are going well also. Throw Open your shutters is a joyful Christmas ditty with the effect of bells throughout and lots of fun. And the contrasting slow piece - a spiritual style Hear my prayer is very very beautiful. The pieces for the chief choral are coming along. Our own choice, Jubilant song is a great contemporary piece for choir set to words by Walt Whitman with lots of changing time signatures and syncopation. The set piece is suitably dull and old-school, but we are doing an nice enough job on this. Words by Coleridge Taylor and music by some woman from the 40s who has never been heard from again. It's the ladies' pieces that have been the most difficult. The Blue Bird by Charles Villiers Stanford is a killer. Five parts, deathly slow, dissonance everywhere, with lots of sustain required. Needless to say we did not choose it, it's the set piece. It has improved out of sight in the last two weeks but we could probably do with about three more rehearsals to be really excellent. Still, we won't embarrass ourselves. And it will be so interesting to hear how the other groups have interpreted it. And the own choice is a cute thing by Mendelsohn "Night Ride of Elves". It's all very Midsummer Night's Dream, but not that easy either. They both went unexpectedly well on Sunday so that's a good sign. Oh and finally the small vocal ensemble, in which I sing alto. It's a six part arrangement of the spiritual Were You There and so so lovely to sing in. I just love it.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Oh that pesky yellow line

Oh that PESKY YELLOW LINE, how it heartlessly dictates the fortunes of the Biggest Loser contestants. Thanks to the ubiquitous recapping I was able to catch all of Friday's missed episode in the first five minutes of last night's weigh in. It was a bike challenge which Tiffany won and gained the all-important IMMUNITY. Yay Tiffany. Surprisingly , Cameron came second. Both Andrew and Sean were worrying about the ALLIANCE. And so they should be. Although anyone with a little nous can see that now Cameron is the biggest threat because he has the most weight left to lose, whereas Andrew and Sean have lost most of theirs. And therein lies the unfairness of the reality TV programming. So sadly, Cameron was once again the BIGGEST LOSER OF THE WEEK, while Andrew and Sean will have to FACE AJAY in the ELIMINATION ROOM. That's a scary prospect for all concerned. However, I do love the moment when she says "It's time to cut the fat". How does she manage to keep a straight face? Perhaps she is a robot with no sense of humour built in.

Who will they vote out? I'm guessing Andrew but will most likely be WRONG. Meanwhile back up at the Survivor Loser Island Ranch, Nathan and Bob had to face a tortuous training session from the Commando. He caught them ENJOYING THEMSELVES with a spot of fishing on the BEACH, so they had to PAY. Bob was REALLY PAYING. However, he continues to lose weight - 9kilos in a week! Are you kidding me? Methinks Nathan was a BIG BIT PEEVED.

And then a surprisingly enjoyable episode of Poirot: The Third Girl. As usual I haven't read the book, although the mother-one tells me this morning that unlike the past few weeks' episodes they mucked around with this one a little bit. Anyway, it had the actress from Lost in Austen as the traumatised heroine, plus Zoe Wanamaker as Ariadne Oliver, so all was well, even Zoe's hair. And I didn't guess whodunnit, and the final scene where Poirot reveals all was not as extensively boring as in previous weeks. Poirot's interior decorating at his apartment was very beautiful also. Last episode next week apparently.

a little rant about adoption accessorising

So Madonna has been unable to adopt another child from Malawi. There's something that bothers me about these Hollywood celebrities adopting children and creating their "rainbow families". I mean perhaps the intentions of Brangelina and the like are good, but sometimes it just looks like the latest form of accessorising. I know the New Idea and Woman's Day aren't going to report on celebrities giving huge amounts to build infrastructure in the third world and that it's more media friendly to drag around cute children, and perhaps they do also donate a lot of money to charity, but something doesn't sit quite right for me.

You know, it just reminds of when Paris Hilton used to walk around with the little chihauha in her big tote bag. Does she still do this? What is Paris up to these days anyway? Whoops - got right off the topic there.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Watch, Listen and Singalong: Part 20: Sunday morning Serenity Now

When I was young my parents bought Willie Nelson's Stardust album, with covers of classics. They played it a lot. I used to love it, both for his interpretations and the songs themselves.

Serenity Now....(unnecessary but strangely appropriate Seinfeld reference).

yet another reason why I am not a domestic goddess

Feeling mightily pleased with myself, I stepped out the back door with a basketful of sheets, towels and a few other sundry items to hang them on the line only to discover the load of towels I washed last Sunday still hanging on the line.

I felt it was pretty safe to assume that after 7 days outside they were dry.

The problem is I can't see my clothes line from any room in the house. Am I going to have to start putting reminders in my outlook calendar: "4:30: get washing off line"?.

Sunday morning

Another pre-Eisteddfod concert this afternoon which means I have a half a Sunday to complete the following jobs.
- wash sheets
- wash towels
- put away all clothes from washing yesterday
- organise music between singing folder and accompanying folder
- vacuum - cat hair situation starting to get out of control
- go out to buy weekly supply of fruit. Running out of bananas and apples
- wash my hair and do 20 minute colour conditioning.
- decide what to wear to the concert this afternoon. (this is the one that will take the most time)
- sit around and re-read yesterday's paper while drinking coffee. (this is the one that is most likely to happen)
- tidy gradually increasing pile of paper on my desk which is encroaching on the small amount of desk I have already.
- briefly practice piano and singing my part of the awful ladies piece "the blue bird".

Probably time to get up from the computer then. I've got to be ready by 1pm.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

my obsession with t-shirts continues

Mark today as a red letter day in your calendars. For the first time ever I bought something at Supre. I refused to let the overpowering fluorescent lighting, booming music, and the stick thin 15 year olds deter me from buying a tacky 15 dollar pink Easter bunny T-Shirt. My addiction to t-shirts now knows no bounds. I'm so excited about wearing it. I think I shall wear it out to dinner tonight, to work next Thursday and then on Easter Sunday. By then it will be worn out and I can throw it away.

Tacky bargains...I love them.

like sands through the hourglass

Apparently I missed the Biggest Loser last night because I was out at the eisteddfod meeting. So I DON'T KNOW what happened except that Cameron CRIED....AGAIN. Thanks Jilly for this update. We'll all have to wait until Sunday night's WEIGH IN to see what happens. Like sands through the hourglass so too are the episodes of THE BIGGEST LOSER.

I did however catch Rebus. It had the actress in it who was the other woman in At Home with the Braithwaites as a special branch undercover agent. So you knew she was going to turn out to be no good. That's okay. Of course they cut the entire subplot from the book about Siobhan's parents being involved with the WTO protestors. And the romance between Rebus and the undercover agent was a little bit awkward. Still nice shots of Edinburgh. And it seemed, there was more swearing than previous episodes. Is this an attempt to be "grittier"? If so, it didn't add too much in my opinion.

Oh and I watched some of the Broncos vs the Roosters. Wayne Bennett is one of the few interesting things about the NRL.

All in all, a slow night on the teev.

Friday, April 3, 2009

the all seeing Ajay

What a BIG night it was on the Biggest Loser. Something happened that WOULD CHANGE THE GAME foretold by the all-seeing Ajay the previous evening. A letter (strangely not a BIG letter) arrived at the BIG door of the BIG house. It said that the contestants had a LITTLE amount of time to decide who would take the BIG WALK. After some BIG deliberation they chose Meghan. She had never taken the WALK before, so she was KEEN to do so. Also, she wanted to keep the ALLIANCE of Cameron, Sammy, Tiffany, Julie and herself STRONG. So they couldn't let Sharif do it. Because the person who took the walk was promised a lot of POWER.

Meghan arrived at the BIG urns filled with BIG flowers. Ajay VERY SLOWLY explained that she needed to choose between the urns. " ...vessels....One...of...them...contains...a..big...medal..thingy...that...says..." get the picture.I can't keep that up for much longer. (Plus, be aware that is not a direct quote. I'm not sure that medal thingy is what the medal thingies are called)

Anyhoo, after about five BIG ad breaks, Meghan arrived back at the BIG house to greet the contestants who were sitting on the BIG couch. She, herself sat on the BIG coffee table and revealed that she now had the BIG POWER to choose to eliminate one of the BIG MEN or to eliminate herself. A BIG moment of drama.

Andrew offered to go. And we all knew she wasn't getting rid of Cameron, even though he still has the most weight to lose so could be considered the BIGGEST THREAT.

Everyone walked VERY SLOWLY into the BIG GYM and lined up. After some ads for junk food (alternating uncomfortably with ads for Biggest loser brand shakes) Meghan revealed her BIG DECISION.

It's time to go...Sharif. No BIG surprise sadly. Everybody cried. Sharif gave Meghan a BIG awkward hug. And then we got to see him two months later, even thinner and still losing weight. Go Sharif! You were one of my favourites, after Bob of course.

(PS.Up on Survivor Loser Island the Commando had Bob and Nathan pull a BIG BOAT up the beach. They were BIG tired after that).

Watch, Listen and Singalong: Part 19: a Simon and Garfunkel special episode

Sure I got carried away and am still to find a decent version of Bridge Over Troubled Water which I adore. It's not everyday that Simon and Garfunkel announce they're coming to Brisbane. Now, the concert is inconveniently placed on a Wednesday evening. Some work juggling will be necessary if I am going to get there. In the meantime, enjoy, and remember there's plenty more where these came from. Other favourites: Homeward Bound, The Boxer, At the Zoo, April Come She Will...the list goes on and on.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Luka, Lawrence and Losers

Well it was a big night of telly last night.
Firstly Losers, with the MAKEOVER episode. They all went to JOH BAILEY's to get their hair done. Finally they took they eyebrow ring away from Sean which improved his look NO END in my humble opinion. Sharif shaved his beard and cut his hair to discover he had a jawline and Cameron removed his beard to discover he not only looked younger, but also had quite big ears which the hair and beard have clearly been disguising for quite some time. Tiffany's hair was just right the way it was ACCORDING TO JOH. And Andrew finally looked like the YOUNG MAN FROM HERVEY BAY that he is. At last they cut off the skunky black underneath of Meghan's do. Julie's bouffant job made her face look even thinner and last of all Sammy went from blonde to brunette. They all looked FABULOUS. But wait, there's more. They were then taken to a stylist at the Sydney Theatre Company to get NEW CLOTHES. This was exciting. Because then they each sashayed down the catwalk to check themselves out in the BIG MIRROR, and be surprised by the arrival of a LOVED ONE. Cue much TEARS, LAUGHING AND HUGGING. Everyone was very HAPPY, until party pooper Ajay waltzed in to announce that something VERY BIG that would CHANGE THE GAME FOREVER was going to happen tomorrow.

Then Luka Bloom was on Spicks and Specks. I am not a fan of Luka Bloom apart from his wonderful name and Irish accent. This was enough to keep me watching. The lady from Limelight magazine was trying too hard, but maybe if they give her another go she'll strike the right tone. Absolute highlight though was Mr Bloom singing an acoustic version of Can't Get You Out of My Head. He managed to turn a boring repetitive dance tune, into a melodic and harmonic masterpiece that was both poignant and humorous. Maybe I need to seek out some Luka Bloom.

And then the unmentionable half hour for which the Television is TURNED OFF.

And then I gave Lawrence Leung another go. This week's Lawrence's Choose your own Adventure was to become a Rock Star. I still enjoyed Lawrence's naivety of manner, but sneaking into the scenes and set ups was a sense of artifice which didn't sit as nicely as the innocent tone of last week's episode. Although when he sang his Choose your own adventure theme song backed by his outsourced Indian rock band through SKype on whatever that MTV show was, I had to wonder if I was witnessing a wonderfully wry and comic deconstruction of the contemporary music industry. The other option is that it was just plain silly. I am left unsure on this one.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Does this make me a sad, pathetic television addict?

I am passing on bookclub tonight in favour of Biggest Loser makeover episode (which better be tonight!!).
Does this make a sad, pathetic television addict? Or am I a thoughtful culture vulture whose dedication to her blog's Biggest Loser updates is a credit to her, and everyone who knows and loves The Biggest Loser?

You decide and feel free to let me know!

However, here are my thoughts on the book anyway. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society was a very light read. It did manage to maintain my interest in terms of the historical backdrop of World War 2 and the difficult situation of Guernsey at that time. The romantic plot between the London author in search of a book and the local fella was okay, but nothing to write home about. It was very much in the same vein of Alexander McCall Smith's La's Orchestra Saves the World. Similar historical period, similar tone, except I preferred it because it was also about the redemptive qualities of music. Either way, they're both easy before bed reading. They won't win any literary awards, but they won't do you any harm either.
Verdict: O.K.

It's been a long day, so that's all you're getting on the book. But mighty bookclubbers if after your meeting you have more to add please do in the comments! And yes, Jinx, I know I am missing out on cinnamon muffins.

The Dreaded Yellow Line

It was a BIG night on the BIGGEST LOSER. Firstly, training. Shannon made his Blue team pull together by training with a BIG ROPE. And Michelle made her Red Team train with BIG PLATES OF FOOD in front of them, so they understood about the BIG CALORIES they used to consume. And then, it was time for the Rules of the Biggest Loser not only to CHANGE THE GAME COMPLETELY, but for the rule book to be THROWN OUT OF THE WINDOW. Cue looks of CONFUSION and BEWILDERMENT. Biggest Loser HISTORY may have also been mentioned here. I can't remember.

Well I'm just not quite sure why they revealed the Secret Survivor Commando White Team (aka Bob and Nathan) to the Reds and the Blues last night. Surely it would have been better to wait a little longer. Anyway, Commando had Bob and Nathan do a pointless kind of training exercise involving a cargo net, a box and a BIG PILE of coconuts on the BEACH.

Back at the ranch there was a surprise visit to the WEIGH IN ROOM where the White Team was revealed, then the teams were disbanded and everyone is now for themselves. The dreaded YELLOW LINE is BACK IN PLAY.

Thank you Ajay for your excessively precise clarification of the CHANGES.